There is a deep mistake that entrepreneurs believe when it comes to business. Namely, there is this belief that you need to make a choice between being a father, and being an entrepreneur. Nothing in between, these two are incompatible. It’s up to the wife to care for your child, while you are out there in the world, dominating your field, cigars, golfing, and whiskey during the day, coffee and long hours in front of the screen at night. But this is simply not true.
We are not saying it’s easy, but there is much to learn and to gain from being a dad who is also an entrepreneur, a business leader. You won’t have to make a choice between growing your own business and being a dedicated father. You can have both, you can let both sides of your life help you grow, help you advance, develop, mature, and become better in every possible way.
The connection between these two aspects of your life is not frivolous, quite the opposite. Both are great challenges, both are you leaving your mark on the world. And the benefits that being both a businessman and a father are interchangeable, they build on each other, making you better at being both.
More focus when managing your time
Time management, creating schedules, sticking to them, multitasking several tasks, it all leads to becoming better at business and becoming a better dad. You might be afraid that your child will take away from your time being an entrepreneur. Your schedule will pretty much be broken up into pieces, any plans you make for the day will be disrupted. And this is good.
Instead of ruining your time management ideas and plans, you will become so much better at controlling your time. A dirty diaper, crying in the middle of the night, feeding, going out for a walk, and all the other aspects of taking care of your baby will certainly influence how you do your paperwork, how you run your company, talk to suppliers and distributors, holding meetings with partners and shareholders. Having these two aspects of your life vying for your attention will show exactly how good you can be at controlling your schedule, as well as pointing out where you can trim the fat.
We all spend so much time on frivolous things, on aspects of our lives that don’t matter. Running a business and taking care of your child will give you focus – they will shine a light on things that you can cut out. Raising your child right will give you a new sense of perspective and self-awareness. You might think a phone call from a partner when you’re feeding your baby or being late to the office because the doctor visit lasted too long, are distractions. Twitter, frivolous emails, browsing on your phone, conversations with people you don’t care about, and all these things will melt away easily once the pressure gets going.
This will also teach you to prioritize. Instead of wasting your energy on every single aspect and part of your work, you can learn to delegate – you won’t have any choice. This is especially important for those people who simply must have to oversee anything, who have a certain helicopter parent/businessman tendencies. So, prioritize.
If you have to get in contact with suppliers, accountants, and attorney, see what you can do over the phone, and what needs to be done in person. Make a schedule, let your wholesale raw material suppliers come to you while visiting your professional experienced compensation lawyers in person. You should also become pickier as far as your clients are concerned.
Accepting that some things are outside your control
Your children and your business have their own rhythm. They grow at their own pace, they move how they will. You can, of course, push them into one direction or the other. You can and should spend hours of your time on making the best for both. However, external factors (like the market or school) often take over. It’s up to you to stay patient, to understand that at a certain point you can’t do anymore.
If you do the proper research, if you follow your advisors and your doctors, if you’ve read some child-rearing books and got properly educated in your field, you should know what certain milestones are. And sometimes, you just need to let go, to get to work, to power through a difficult day and understated that it will pay off sooner or later and that some things are outside your control.
You will test your limits like never before. It will take time and effort, but you will get used to sleeping 5 hours per night with a good power nap in the middle of the day. What you thought was your 100% before will look like a vacation when compared to running a business and taking care of your child. And you will not want it any other way. By having these two noble goals in front of you, you will be able to tap into energy reserves you never thought you had. Both mentally and physically, you will realize just how much you can endure, and for how long.
Patience, resilience, time management – these are all core aspect of being a good father, and being a good entrepreneur. And both aspects of life teach you these skills, they give you opportunities to hone them. Instead of having the entrepreneurial aspect of your life overpower your parenthood or vice versa, let one build upon the other. Allow your work to help you become a better father, allow your child to help you become a stronger businessman. You build so you can provide a better future for your child, your child is there to remind you that there is more to life than just work. Finding a correct balance between the two will help you build the life you want, helps you stay disciplined, but also helps you stay empathic. There is room for both.